The Kentucky General Assembly voted last month to set aside $3 million for an Electric Reliability Defense Program under the office of our state’s Attorney General. The reason for creating the program is to give the Attorney General the means to fight back against harmful federal policies and regulations. Although the program had bipartisan support, critics suggested it was unnecessary and alarmist. They were proven wrong last week when EPA took the unprecedented step of issuing three new regulations designed to shut down dependable power sources even though electricity demand is exploding and officials are warning about the possibility of power shortages in the future.

States should oppose unreasonable federal rules that will increase the threat of an electricity crisis. According to the nation’s largest grid operators who are responsible for keeping the lights on in Kentucky and most other parts of the country, EPA’s proposed Carbon Rule had “the potential to … adversely impact electric reliability.” Unfortunately, the final version of the 1,020-page Carbon Rule released last week by EPA is worse than last year’s proposed rule because the final rule could shut down all U.S. coal plants by 2032, maybe earlier, and limit the operation of new natural-gas fired power plants.

Thanks to the foresight of the General Assembly and the bill’s sponsors, Kentucky will have access to experts to analyze and, if necessary, push back on new regulations, which will disproportionately impact states that rely on dependable sources of electricity to power homes and businesses. This new Electric Reliability Defense Program will help prevent Washington politics from undermining Kentucky’s energy security.

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